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Digital Marketing Models: The Honeycomb model

Author's avatar By Annmarie Hanlon 03 Mar, 2022
Essential Essential topic

Use the honeycomb model to help inform your social media strategy

Back in 2011, a group of professors from Canada; Jan Kietzmann, Kristopher Hermkens and Ian McCarthy created the Honeycomb Model to review social media effectiveness, looking at reasons why users engage with social media.

The idea behind the honeycomb model is that of the 7 key building blocks delineated by the model, companies can select the ones most relevant to their business, and focus their attention on the key functionalities.

Honeycomb model

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We created this simple table to help you evaluate each of the seven blocks, so you can decide which ones, and how many, your organization should focus on.

Social media building blocks:

Identity: Data privacy controls and tools for user self-promotion
Presence: Creating and managing the reality, intimacy and immediacy of the context
Relationships: Managing the structural and flow properties in a network of relationships
Reputation: Monitoring the strength, passion, sentiment, and reach of users and brands
Groups: Membership rules and protocols
Conversations: Conversation velocity, and the risks of staring and joining
Sharing: Content management system and social graph

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Social media marketing model

In summary, the Honeycomb model is a great framework for considering social media networks but it is not a decision tree and therefore the final decision as to ‘which network should we select?’, still, needs to be taken within the organization.

For more information on digital models, see our free digital marketing models guide.


Author's avatar

By Annmarie Hanlon

Annmarie Hanlon PhD is an academic and practitioner in strategic digital marketing and the application of social media for business. Dr Hanlon has expertise in the strategic application of social media for business and the move from digitization, to digitalization and digital transformation for business. Her expertise spans consumer touch points, online customer service, the use of reviews, the role of influencers, online engagement and digital content. You can follow her update on Twitter https://twitter.com/annmariehanlon

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